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Eagles Mere Innkeepers Preserve the Past

  • By
  • January 15, 2018
Richard Lobach Eagles Mere Inn innkeeper

Hospitality at its Finest

Innkeepers Geniality Abound

culinary Eagles Mere Inn
Richard and Tammy Lobach have brought their years of culinary and hospitality experience to their positions as innkeepers at The Eagles Mere Inn. Photos and text by Joan Mead-Matsui, journalist, travel writer, and photographer.

When you walk in the doors of the Eagles Mere Inn, you’ll likely smell a sweet aroma coming from the kitchen. Shortbread cookies, warm cider, and aromatic teas are seasonal treats in the works throughout the year that is available for guests to sample. Consider your first whiff of delightful sweets as an indication of what’s to come during your stay at the inn.

Eagles Mere Inn country retreat
Innkeeper, Tammy Lobach isn’t shy about asking guests to taste test new recipes. In the meantime, while you wait for your “small plate” or entree to arrive, you can dream of what’s cooking in the kitchen. 

Creating a Favorable Experience Is Key

 

Staging allows innkeepers Richard and Tammy Lobach to create an ideal atmosphere for their guests.

“We’re all about the experience. We’re trying to make our guests’ experiences a bit more current. But the house has a history. We’re giving the inn a fresh facelift. We love the history of Eagles Mere and we are incorporating that into this building.” ~ Richard Lobach, Eagles Mere Inn innkeeper

 

Richard Lobach Eagles Mere Inn innkeeper
Richard Lobach embraces Eagles Mere history and the inn’s collection of memorabilia displayed throughout the inn. The medal he’s shown holding will hang in the Water Carnival Room to represent happenings at Eagles Mere water carnivals held in the 1920s. 

Be Prepared to Embrace History

 

What are guests looking for in a bed and breakfast experience? One guest reserved a room for one night and stayed a week. Richard attributes her change of heart to an abundance of peacefulness and a slowed pace that visitors seek when they choose The Eagles Mere Inn.

Eagles Mere is quiet during the winter months and Richard is candid with guests who seem disappointed to learn the borough doesn’t offer shopping outlets and nightlife.

“I tell prospective guests, If you’re looking to be entertained, you won’t find that in Eagles Mere,” Richard says. 

 

What you will find are an inn and a village brimming with history and activities centered on family.

“We’re bringing the history of the town into the inn,” Richard explained.

He found his way into the hospitality industry as a bellhop right out of high school and has worked for several large hospitality corporations. His positions entailed taking over bankrupted, foreclosed, and underperforming hotels. But the hours were demanding and five years ago, Richard required surgery to repair a back problem and realized he had to change his lifestyle.

“I got a job at a bed & breakfast in New Hope, PA and when the position was eliminated, I (answered an ad and) came to the Eagles Mere Inn.”

Richard and Tammy, Allentown, PA natives, have been married for 32 and have two daughters.

“We went from seeing each other 30 hours a week to seeing, living and working together 24/7. I think with 32 years of marriage, we got that part. We learn from each other and sometimes we are able to listen to each other. Sometimes not,” he quipped.

Richard’s extensive background in hospitality management and Tammy’s many years in food preparation have enabled them to run the inn and stay on top of their evolving business as innkeepers.

Eagles Mere Inn culinary
Tammy has worked on and off in the hospitality industry for years. 

Although they use seasonal chefs, during the off-season, Richard and Tammy assume a variety of roles. Tammy is shown in the recently renovated kitchen at The Eagles Mere Inn. Her day typically begins around 5 a.m.

“I started out in the J.C. Penney restaurant and I cooked my way through college,” Tammy noted.

Breakfast is available bright and early for “first on the scene” guests who are eager to begin their day. Featured breakfasts range from sweet or savory options to a buffet when visitors total 10 or more.

“What kind of things do you like for breakfast?” was one of the first questions Tammy asked upon my arrival at the inn, followed by “Do you prefer sweet or savory?”

Eagles Mere Inn breakfast
“Made to order to your liking” is one of the extraordinary aspects of dining at The Eagles Mere Inn. A fried egg served over strips of crispy bacon and greens is a delightful mix of savory and healthy. Baked peach oatmeal, eggs, and a “Country Bake,” (everybody’s favorite) a gluten-free selection that’s prepared with eggs, potatoes, and cheese are among the breakfast options. 

In addition to her breakfast and dessert contributions, Tammy makes several treks each week to markets to buy fresh produce and other staples.

“I do all of the shopping and I try to buy fresh produce whenever possible. Whatever is in the store that looks really great, that’s what I serve,” Tammy says. “It’s great to have that flexibility because we are not a corporate property. I can go to a farmers’ market and buy vegetables and put them into a dish.”

The Eagles Mere Inn can accommodate up to 140 patrons in its three dining venues: A.C. Little Drinkery, On the Rocks patio and the 1887 Chop House, a more formal dining space.

“The inn is a continuously growing and product improvement plan. Take-outs, eat-in…you can do it all at The Eagles Mere Inn,” ~ Richard Lobach

More interesting facts about The Eagles Mere Inn:

(courtesy of Richard and Tammy Labach)

  • The guest rooms (17) were numbered when they first arrived at the inn but researching historical Eagles Mere documents helped them to assign a name to each room and the dining options.
  • In the Raymond room, they have “Raymond” memorabilia, a teacup that’s stored in a shadow box and pictures to go along with the former Raymond Hotel.
  • Some of the renovations have included new carpeting in 80 percent of the rooms, all new mattresses, water filtration systems, water softeners, air conditioning, remodeled tavern and front porch, and a fresh coat of paint.

 

Don’t miss my companion story joanmatsuitravelwriter.com/eagles-mere-inn
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Lifestyle

Bob Dunlop shares stories from the Crescent Lodge

  • By
  • April 3, 2017
Bob Dunlop, Crescent Lodge owner, has dedicated more than 70 years to the hospitality industry. Photos by Joan Mead-Matsui

Crescent Lodge: a retreat from city life

Peaceful paradise in the heart of the Poconos

In 1947, Jack Dunlop and his wife, Minerva, traveled to the Pocono Mountains and found the perfect spot — a nine-bedroom former boarding house on 28 scenic acres along Route 191 in Paradise Valley.

Bob Dunlop, current Crescent Lodge owner, described his parents as typical “New Yorkers” who discovered their niche in the Pennsylvania’s Pocono Mountains.

Dunlop was 10-years old and growing up on Long Island, N.Y. when his father purchased the rooming house “in the country” as a retreat from city life. Family and friends gathered there on weekends and summers to play cards and unwind.

The Crescent lodge is located in Cresco, PA in the heart of the Poconos at 5854 Paradise Valley Rd, at a busy thoroughfare that intersects with Route 191. Despite a constant flow of traffic; inside the lodge, guests will find a peaceful reprieve among the antique furniture and memorabilia Dunlop has collected over the years. Don’t miss the wall of photos near the registration desk that feature Dunlop immersed in one of his favorite hobbies – golf.

The Crescent Lodge, Paradise Valley, was a former boarding house. On a mid-summer evening, there wasn’t a seat available in the dining room. My table had a view of the pool and Dunlop’s collection of vintage cottages he and his father built, one by one, over a 70-year span.

As I scribbled notes in my stenographer’s notebook, I heard a male voice ask, “How’s everything?”

I gazed up and found Dunlop standing next to my table. Whenever he’s in town, he makes his evening rounds to each table. greeting dinner patrons and inquiring about their meals. From the brief conversations I overheard, I wasn’t sure if the customers were close acquaintances or new customers, but nonetheless, I heard rave reviews. Dunlop and his son, Wayne, have built their business by carrying on a tradition of personalized service, flavorsome cuisine, and plentiful portions. Part of their success is attributed to a hands-on approach. On that night, Dunlop’s son, Wayne, was the maitre d, but he also serves as the chef, according to Dunlop.

Decades of

As I waited for my French Onion Soup appetizer to arrive, Dunlop gave me his undivided attention as he shared decades of stories about his life in the hospitality business.

“My father bought the property and came up often with his friends on the weekends,” Dunlop commented. “When they started the business, they did not charge guests. The guests felt guilty not paying to stay here.”

Wistful Charm 

Patrons will find a touch of vintage charm, whether they choose to stay in the inn or one of the captivating cottages. Each accommodation at the Crescent Lodge has its own distinctive style and is adorned with ample furnishings covered in soft, comfortable fabrics.

Guests can choose from a room in the inn or in one of the custom-built cottages.

Rather than dress his rooms in the most up-to-date fabrics and colors, Dunlop has chosen to retain a style that’s reminiscent of the late 1940s, intermingled with the amenities guests expect. Private bathrooms with a shower and bathtub, toiletries, hair dryer, ironing board, and iron are some of the comforts provided. Many of the cottages feature a fireplace and sunken jacuzzi built for two.

Dunlop offers his guests the timeless style and elegance they’ve come to expect. 

Dunlop has witnessed first-hand significant changes in the hospitality industry. One way to stay up-to-date with trends is the practical approach he has acquired after nearly 70 years in the business by staying in touch with his customers’ needs.

“I was just a kid when my father began to build the cottages in a semi-cirle,” Dunlop explained, referring to the cottages dressed in cedar shingles. 

Years later, when he was absorbed in his own career, Dunlop, an architect, made a decision to take over the family business, but his design skills and training weren’t wasted. Upkeep often included building and renovation projects. Cedar is a key element in the cottages’ exterior facade and all but one of the bungalows has a fireplace.

“My parents didn’t know what to do with the (Crescent Lodge) business. So, I gave up my business and I took over,” he said.

The Cedar shingles incorporated into the cottage design lend a romantic appeal.  

While being in the hospitality business is at the very least demanding, Dunlop said a dedication to the business is a necessity.

 Anyone who gets into the hospitality business needs to know it’s very time-consuming,” he quipped. “I’m like a doctor. If somebody needs something at three o’clock in the morning, we have to get up and do it, but it’s very rewarding.”

Dunlop draws his dinner clients from a variety of demographics. Folks passing through the Poconos or those with second homes dine with him on a frequent basis and many are faithful followers who have been fans for years. Overnight guests range from honeymooners seeking romance, privacy and outdoor recreational activities to the over 55 crowd, who shop, golf or kick back.

“I have to give my dad credit. He was very progressive for that era. We’ve had a really nice business and we’ve met all sorts of people. You make a lot of people happy. I don’t think we’ve made anybody unhappy,” Dunlop said. 

Visit crescentlodge.com for more information regarding rates, menus, deals and packages. You can also find the best deal, compare prices, and read what other travelers have to say at TripAdvisor

Disclosure:

My trip was comped but my opinions are my own.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Downtown Philadelphia Lodging Lifestyle Newly renovated Philadelphia hotel Philadelphia Philadelphia lodging Upscale Philadelphia hotel

Upscale Philadelphia Hotel: Sonesta

  • By
  • January 12, 2017

Sonesta Philadelphia

Upscale Sophistication

Set on at the corner of 18th and Market St., along one of Philadelphia’s busiest streets and only steps away from Rittenhouse Square, The Sonesta Philadelphia, an artful, upscale boutique hotel, is an ideal location for guests who want to be within walking distance from many of Philadelphia’s famed attractions.

But location isn’t the hotel’s only draw.

 

My first impression of the Sonesta Philadelphia Rittenhouse Square was artful, upscale, stylish and sophisticated.

The hotel, formerly known as Crowne Plaza, underwent a colossal transformation to the tune of nearly $30 million in January 2013.

A smiling face eagerly awaits you at the registration desk at Sonesta Philadelphia. The concierge and staff greeted guests with the impression they’ve been anticipating their arrival in town.

As you enter the lobby through the revolving doors, straight on you’ll find the registration desk. On a weekday afternoon, the crowd in the public area was a mix of businessmen and women and tourists checking in. To the left of the main lobby, visitors sipped coffee and relaxed among the art on display.

Contemporary decor
Art created by Philadelphia artists and craftsmen is the focal point in the lobby of Sonesta Philadelphia Rittenhouse Square.

While busy metro hotel lobbies can be impersonal, not so at Sonesta. Both the decor and the staff are welcoming. Contemporary furnishings have an almost retro feel, with an added sparkle. The decor is a deliberate reflection of this hotel brand’s diverse and distinctive properties.

Sonesta management has partnered with the Center for Emerging Visual Artists and the result of this alliance has resulted in enrichment and reinforcement of Philadelphia’s own extraordinarily rich heritage and culture. The in-house art gallery is located amidst contemporary furnishings and wall treatments and the art is available for sale. Exhibits are rotated every six months.
Spectacular views of the downtown will likely motivate you to explore the city.

Our guest room offered a panoramic view of the downtown area, luxurious bedding, and reliable high-speed wireless internet access. I was particularly captivated by the lively, vibrant furnishings. The mural above the headboard reinforces Sonesta’s unique, artistic style.

 

Guests can learn more about The City of Brotherly Love’s history and happenings from among the resources provided in the guest rooms. Or, connect with the concierge upon check-in or reach out to the staff at Philadelphia’s official tourist site, visitphilly.com. 

 

Our room on the 24th floor offered comfortable quarters and ample room to relax and work, but if you desire more space, among the 439 accommodations are 22 suites or a grand Presidential Suite. To learn more about lodging options, visit www.sonesta.com

Sonesta offers the best of all worlds – whether you’re in Philadelphia for business or sightseeing, you’ll find all of the conveniences that will make your stay enjoyable and enriching. Elsewhere at Sonesta Philadelphia, you’ll find a seasonal rooftop swimming pool, a 24-hour fitness center, and a 24-hour business center.

Meeting space to the tune of 16,000 square feet and the close proximity to the Philadelphia (PHL) International Airport, is an added benefit to businesses and organizations seeking a location for their next event.

Looking for additional travel information, be sure to refer to Find the best deal, compare prices, and read what other travelers have to say at TripAdvisor.

Upcoming stories…

  • Visit Philly: 5 must-see sites in 24 hours
  • Penn Museum
  • Experience Butcher Bar, one of Philly’s newest restaurants and hangouts
  • “The cells will speak to you,” a story and videos from my visit to the Eastern State Penitentiary.

While my trip was sponsored by Visit Philadelphia (visitphilly.com), rest assured my opinions are my own. 
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concerts Dining at Spa Destinations Events Lifestyle Mount Airy night life Pocono Mountain entertainment Pocono Mountain events Pocono Mountain nightlife

A much-needed date night: Mount Airy Casino Resort

  • By
  • December 15, 2016

 

A perfectly crafted date night

Mount Airy Casino Resort

 

Are you longing for a much-needed date night?

A quiet dining experience at a table for two? A concert? Or both? Date nights don’t happen often enough and setting aside a night out can be a daunting task.

More than two years ago, Vincent Jordan, Vice President of Marketing & Player Development at Mount Airy Casino Resort, introduced me to the first-class accommodations at Mount Airy during a weekend travel assignment. Recently, my husband and I returned as dinner guests and were treated to a full-course, candlelit meal at Bistecca by IL MULINO, followed by a concert featuring jazz saxophonist legend, Kenny G, and a “meet and greet.”

If you crave shellfish, Bistecca’s Market Oysters are a spectacular beginning to your meal.

Date night began at 6:30 p.m. on a Friday evening at a candlelit table for two. If you’ve never been to Mount Airy, Bistecca is located on the second floor and only steps away from the casino and several other dining options. The location is particularly convenient for guests and visitors who plan to try their skills (and luck) at the gaming tables and slot machines or get their taste of nightlife in Gypsies Lounge, one of Mount Airy’s busiest entertainment venues.

Bistecca is the perfect setting to reminisce over a meal that’s expertly prepared and served in a relaxed, casual setting. Celebrate your night together with a cocktail or a selection from an extensive wine selection from around the world.

A succulent appetizer – Octopus with white beans and tomatoes.

Are you wondering about the type of fare you’ll find at Bistecca? The cuisine is a combination of Abruzzo-style and a modern steakhouse. Meats are hand-cut by the executive chef, the pasta is handcrafted, and the seafood and produce are extremely fresh.

The kale salad featured apples, almonds, shaved parmesan cheese and a delightfully light, flavorful dressing.

Most of our meal selections came from the main menu. We selected ORGANIC ROASTED BEETS goat cheese and tomatoes, GRILLED OCTOPUS white beans and tomato, WHOLE GRILLED BRANZINO fennel, arugula, orange, COLORADO LAMB CHOPS, MARKET OYSTERS, TRUFFLE FRIES  and STEAKHOUSE FRIES from the menu. There was more than enough food for two people to share. I wish I could say I favored one dish. They were all seasoned and cooked to perfection. Guaranteed, if you go to Bistecca, you will find something for even the most finicky palette. Before you go, you can view the entire menu here

Colorado Lamb Chop

Reservations are recommended.  Guests who haven’t made a reservation will definitely wait in line for a table on the weekends. Plan to arrive for dinner by 5:30 or 6 p.m. to allow plenty of time to relish every bite.

 

Whole Grilled Branzino with fennel, arugula and orange. I typically order fish when I’m on assignment and I wasn’t disappointed with the Branzino’s citrus aroma and lightly salted skin. 

Concert time

The clock was ticking as we finished our meal. After more than 90 minutes of culinary bliss, we were eager to pick up our Kenny G concert tickets at the box office.

Jazz saxophonist legend, Kenny G is one of the recent headliners to perform at Mount Airy Casino Resort. We met Kenny at a photo op and “meet and greet” held after his concert.

Whether you want to be dazzled by top-name entertainers, dance the night away or laugh until your sides ache, after your meal at Bistecca, your night out isn’t over yet. Stroll across the casino floor after your meal and experience big-name talents on stage at Gypsies lounge. After you’ve nourished your taste buds, it’s time to celebrate the performing arts at one of Mount Airy’s shows.

Book your meal, entertainment and lodging online at mountairycasino.comYou’ll find Mount Airy is always jumping with activity, so why not spend the night.

Here’s a preview of upcoming events at Mount Airy. A complete list can be found mountairycasino.com/play/entertainment/headliners. You must be 21 years or older to enter the nightclub.

 

LOVERBOY

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*Event is for guests 21 years & older.

SATURDAY, APRIL 29 • 8PM • DOORS AT 7PM • GYPSIES
TICKETS $65 / $55

GET TICKETS

EDDIE MONEY

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FRIDAY, MAY 19 • 8PM • GYPSIES
TICKETS $65 / $55

GET TICKETS

THE COMMODORES

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SATURDAY, MAY 27, 2017 • 8PM • GYPSIES
TICKETS $65 / $55

GET TICKETS

CRAIG ROBINSON

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SATURDAY, JUNE 3 • 8PM • GYPSIES
TICKETS $65 / $55

GET TICKETS


Mount Airy Casino Resort, 312 Woodland Road, Mount Pocono, is the only full-service casino in Pennsylvania with an AAA Four Diamond Award. This swanky destination getaway is located approximately 90 minutes from New York City on more than 1,000 scenic acres in the Pocono Mountains of Pennsylvania.

Mount Airy Casino Resort

Mount Airy Casino Resort Photo by Joan Mead-Matsui, freelance travel writer and photographer.

Mount Airy Casino Resort, 44 Woodland Rd., Mount Pocono

 

 

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Lifestyle

Discover your craft beer at ShawneeCraft Brewery

  • By
  • December 3, 2016
craft beer

ShawneeCraft Brewery

Discover new favorites

Seated across from me at The Gem and Keystone Brewpub at Shawnee Inn and Golf Resort are two couples. They made a “pit stop” on a quiet, low-key Saturday afternoon to sample craft beer and have lunch – in that order. Food and a cold craft brew go hand-in-hand.

Eavesdropping is ok

Yes, I eavesdropped on their conversation, because I was curious to know which beer they ordered. The man on the far side of the table piqued my curiosity when he asked his friends, “Should we order the sampler?” He was referring to a selection of beer on the ShawneeCraft menu. As I devoured my lunch (an incredible Asian-inspired salad), they indulged in the selections from the ShawneeCraft Brewery.

The Gem is one of Shawnee’s dining locations where you can get your hands on a craft beer that’s hand-made at ShawneeCraft Brewery, an on-site brewpub, located only footsteps away from the inn.  “True to Nature, True to the Craft” is the motto at ShawneeCraft.

What’s on the craft beer menu?

When it’s time to slow down, beer aficionados head to the pub to sample Artisan ales and lagers made with old-fashioned craftsmanship. Biere Blanche, a Belgian-style wheat beer; Session Porter, rich and dark with chocolate and black currant overtones; Session IPA, light in body Helles Lager; Harvest Saison, cloying pumpkin-pie concoction farmhouse-style beer; Imperial Coffee Porter, derived from locally-roasted and freshly-ground coffee from Fieldstone Coffee Roasters (Easton, PA); Raspberry Blanche, with raspberries added to the mix shortly after primary fermentation; and Birra Della Sol, brewed especially for Birra Pizza in Philadelphia, are among the selections.

craft beer
Rhythm & Brews offers guests and visitors a chance to relax while listening to music from a variety of genres.

Whole Food

ShawneeCraft Beers are “whole foods,” that contain the entire nutrient from which they were produced – unfiltered and unpasteurized, and sourced as locally and as organically as possible. According to the Shawnee brew master, they’re produced with no shelf stabilizing agents or chemicals and are brewed in a facility designed to minimize environmental impact and to conserve resources.

Other kinds of food

A jumbo pretzel served with Shawnee Inn Double Pale Ale Triple Play Mustard and four different types of pizza are also on the menu in case you want to grab a quick bite to share with friends. Tap Room hours are Friday 5 p.m. to 10 p.m., Saturday 1 p.m. to 10 p.m., and Sunday 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Food is available on Friday and Saturday evening.

Pairing craft beer and live entertainment

craft beer
Singer/Songwriter, Bob Keel, entertains guests on a Fri., Dec. 2, 2016.

 

On Friday night and Saturday night, live entertainment fills the room.  Aspiring vocalists can showcase their talents and mental acuity at Open Mic & Trivia night and then cap off the evening listening to musicians play your favorite tunes during Rhythm & Brews. Saturday night the entertainment continues.

The location is ideal for guests who want to experience Shawnee Inn nightlife without leaving the property, but the Tap Room is also a hub for local residents and Pocono Mountain visitors.

The atmosphere is rustic, as you might expect, and the attire ranges from jeans to business casual.

Brewery and Tap Room Tours are offered on Wednesday through Sunday.

Here’s a clip from a Dec. 2 Rhythm & Brews.

 

 

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Family Destinations Lifestyle Pocono Mountain Resort TreeVentures

Pocono TreeVentures aerial ropes course

  • By
  • July 15, 2016

Aerial ropes course at Fernwood Resort

Pocono TreeVentures

Stories from the trees

by Kuni, Kento, and Yoshi Matsui, guest bloggers

Pocono TreeVentures aerial ropes course consists of 14 acres through the trees at varying heights and difficulty levels. Each aerial ropes course offers a different challenge level and participants are encouraged to try all five courses.

In June, Kuni, 55, Kento, 16, and Yoshi Matsui, 12, tried their hands at the Pocono TreeVentures aerial ropes course, a challenging adventure for folks of all ages. While the father and sons trio were guests at Fernwood Resort and The Villas at Treetops and Fairway, East Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania, they were offered an opportunity to test their strength and skills.

aerial ropes course
A member of the Pocono TreeVentures aerial ropes course staff trains Kento (left), Yoshi and Kuni Matsui before they begin the course. Photos by John Pahls, Fernwood Resort

Outdoor Ventures Group designed and installed the aerial ropes course with safety as a priority and all participants are suited with a safety harness and they receive a briefing by trained staff before entering the beginner course.

Pocono TreeVentures aerial ropes course and Zip Racer are open year-round weather permitting. The number to call for current course conditions is 800-446-0231.

Leave your sandals and flip flops in your car because closed-toe shoes are required on the courses. 
aerial ropes course at Pocono TreeVentures
All participants are suited with safety gear. Photos by John Pahls, Fernwood Resort

“I’m sure that the view from 40 feet in the air is great, but it takes too much mental focus to even begin to think about the scenery. All you see are the obstacles and all we thought about is how to overcome them.” Kento 

Here’s what Kuni, Kento, and Yoshi had to say about their morning at Pocono Tree Ventures.

What were your expectations before you began the course? Were you nervous/anxious about the course and the height factor?

Kuni: We were excited because it looked like lots of fun, but we could not tell how high and how challenging it was from where we registered.

Yoshi: Getting geared up with harnesses was pretty cool because they (the harnesses) look like the ones we’ve seen on television survival shows.

What was the most enjoyable aspect of your time spent in the trees? Describe how the course began and progressed from beginning to end. Was it difficult from the beginning and consistent throughout the course or a gradual increase in difficulty?

Kuni: We had to go to a center starting platform to access each of the four courses, and decided to skip the beginner level, instead opting to take the intermediate path. The courses included a myriad of balance and strength obstacles that test your physical condition and coordination.

Yoshi: The 30 ft drop at the end…

Kuni: The “Skateboard” zip line…

Kento: My favorite place was the first zip line from the starting platform.

What was the approximate distance between you and the ground throughout the course? Did you feel safe?

Editor’s Note: The distance ranged from 20 to 40 ft off the ground.

Yoshi and Kuni: We felt safe because of the double harness system that ensured you are always connected to a safety wire.

Kento: Safe? Yes. The double harness was a really good idea. It ensured that there’s no chance of falling. Stable? No. The obstacles were designed to unbalance you and test your abilities. I enjoyed the feeling of adrenaline I felt and the little bit of instability made it even more fun.

What course did you follow? Beginner, intermediate or advanced? Is there a profound difference in the degree of difficulty from the beginner to advanced?

Editor’s Note: They followed two of the intermediate courses. One was more advanced than the other.

What were your thoughts as you progressed?

Kuni: There were a few obstacles on the second course that I couldn’t figure out how to do. I watched my sons ahead of me and mimicked their movements and I got through it.

Yoshi: When I felt apprehensive about any of the obstacles, I just pushed through and did them. I felt about the same about every obstacle.

Kento: I was the first (in my family) to go through every obstacle, so I was the one who had to figure out every problem we encountered, without any example to follow.

What are a few of the skills a person needs to have in order to complete the courses?

Kuni: Endurance and mental toughness

Kento: Balance, upper body strength

Yoshi: I think you need a good amount of courage.

Should you try the aerial ropes course at Pocono TreeVentures?

Kuni, Kento, and Yoshi agree the course is excitingfun, and challenging.

Edited by Joan Mead-Matsui

Visit http://visitpoconos.com/Poconos-Articles/ArtMID/2889/ArticleID/480/You%E2%80%99ll-Feel-Close-to-Home-Fernwood-Resort-Ideal-for-Families-on-the-Go.aspx for a detailed wrap-up from my stay at Fernwood Resort.

 

 

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Pocono Mountain Convention Center Pocono Mountain Resort Pocono Mountain Water Park Water Park

Kalahari Resorts and Convention Center

  • By
  • March 12, 2016
Resorts

Kalahari Resorts and Conventions Pocono

A Treasure trove 

of fun and African culture

Kalahari Resorts and Conventions’ Pocono Mountain location is a cultural treat for children and adults alike.

The resort is a treasure trove of African culture and folk art that offer endless educational opportunities for the youngest to the oldest guest. While children will be eager to check-in and head directly to the waterpark and arcade, each photograph and sculpture tells a story and is certainly worth your time to tour and ponder.

resorts
Art abounds at Kalahari Pocono.

Take time to experience art 

Kalahari is museum-like and the careful attention to detail reflects the Nelson family’s fascination and respect for indigenous African art, folklore, and culture. The resort provides an impressive and thoughtful selection of artifacts, photographs, and statuettes the family collected during their 11 or more journeys to the continent.

Head to the waterpark

No doubt the draw for kids is the family-oriented 100,000 square foot indoor waterpark. Even the names of most of the water park attractions: Anaconda, Lazy River, Crocodile Cove, Indoor/Outdoor Family Whirlpool, Wild Wildebeest, Lost Lagoon, Tanzanian Twister, Thirsty Turtle Swim Up Bar, Rippling Rhino, Zimbabwe Zipper, Splashdown Safari, Barrelling Baboon, Tiko’s Watering Hole evoke a sense of adventure. There’s an attraction for every age and when patrons need a break, they can find relaxation in one of the private indoor cabanas fitted with a flat screen TV, chaise lounges, and refrigerator.

More fun awaits you

And then, outside the water park, there’s the arcade with a whopping 30,000 square feet of video games and contests, Blacklight Mini-Golf, Mini-Bowling, and the NEW XD Dark Ride 5-D Theater. Kids and adults can move from one game to the next and effortlessly spend hours getting their visual fix.

When it’s time to refuel… 

The eateries within the resort are particularly geared towards kids and families, but older children and grown-ups can also dine peacefully. Servers are well-trained and eager to please.

Your choices are Brandberg Food & Drink, Great Karoo Marketplace Buffet, Ivory Coast Restaurant, Felix’s Bar, The Last Bite, Java Manjaro, Café Mirage, Waterpark Dining and Pizza Pub. You’ll want to make a dessert stop at Last Bite Candy & Ice Cream and Java Manjaro, Kalahari’s signature cafe that features handpicked Rwandan coffee beans that are brewed on-site. In the background, recorded drum music from the streets of Cape Town resonates and enhances the African theme and helps to set the stage from the moment you arrive at the main entrance.

After your Safari adventure…

When you’re ready to call it a day, Kalahari offers 457 African-themed rooms and suites that are equipped to meet the needs of traveling families. The two-bedroom suite is equipped with one king size bed, two queen size beds and a queen size sofa sleeper that provides ample room for adults to relax without disturbing sleeping children. A coffee maker, television, refrigerator, flat screen televisions, and free Wi-Fi are a few of the standard amenities.

What to bring

Don’t worry about packing a suitcase full of clothes and gear. A swimsuit, cover-up, flip-flops and casual attire are all you’ll need for your overnight stay at Kalahari Resorts and Conventions Pocono.

A weekly special Character Breakfast is held on Saturday morning beginning at 10:50 a.m. at Brandberg Food & Drink. Breakfast gets underway at 11:00 a.m. The cost is adults/$25 and children/$15 and includes visits with character friends, family style dining, games, music, coloring contests, and great photo opportunities. Reservations are required and must be made in advance.

For more details regarding lodging and activities, visit kalahariresorts.com/pennsylvania.

To read my full recap at visitpoconos.com, click here.

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